Book Review: Soft Apocalypse by Will McIntosh

Soft Apocalypse by Will McIntosh
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
Publisher: Night Shade Books

Summary:  What happens when resources become scarce and society starts to crumble? As the competition for resources pulls America's previously stable society apart, the "New Normal" is a Soft Apocalypse. This is how our world ends; with a whimper instead of a bang. New social structures and tribal connections spring up across America, as the previous social structures begin to dissolve. Locus Award finalist and John W. Campbell Memorial Award finalist Soft Apocalypse follows the journey across the Southeast of a tribe of formerly middle class Americans as they struggle to find a place for themselves and their children in a new, dangerous world that still carries the ghostly echoes of their previous lives.

I have to say that I didn’t much enjoy this one. I read this because last month I read Love Minus Eighty. In that book, one of the characters refers to the ‘soft apocalypse’ and the author had a book by that same name so I thought I’d give it a try. I really enjoyed Love Minus Eighty.

This book felt overdrawn and overwrought and it was less than 250 pages in length. A short book shouldn’t feel laborious but I found it a real chore to get through. The characters did not capture my attention or care and Jasper, the main character, was flat out annoying. The whole of the book he’s searching for someone to date. I couldn’t care. The other characters were flat and I truly had to remind myself often who was whom because they were so stock and interchangeable. I liked the idea of the book with society crumbling and pockets of what’s left of civilisation and roving tribes but not enough to make up for the characters. The end though, was actually good or maybe I was just glad it was all over. It was a little sad but pragmatic and I found that I wasn’t at all worried about Japer and the rest of the tribe. They had run their course with the trials presented to them and so had I with the book. I’d read books my McIntosh again but I am glad that this wasn’t the first book of his that I tried as I might not feel the same.

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